Factcheck.org: Tax money will pay for abortion in the health-care bill

posted at 9:00 am on August 22, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

We already knew this, thanks to Rep. Zoe Lofgren and Barack Obama himself, but it’s nice to get confirmation from those fine folks at Factcheck.org — an Annenberg project, no less.  After Obama tried to paint it as a lie, the National Right to Life Committee insisted that ObamaCare would use taxpayer money to fund abortions.  It turns out that they were right:

The truth is that bills now before Congress don’t require federal money to be used for supporting abortion coverage. So the president is right to that limited extent. But it’s equally true that House and Senate legislation would allow a new “public” insurance plan to cover abortions, despite language added to the House bill that technically forbids using public funds to pay for them. Obama has said in the past that “reproductive services” would be covered by his public plan, so it’s likely that any new federal insurance plan would cover abortion unless Congress expressly prohibits that. Low- and moderate-income persons who would choose the “public plan” would qualify for federal subsidies to purchase it. Private plans that cover abortion also could be purchased with the help of federal subsidies. Therefore, we judge that the president goes too far when he calls the statements that government would be funding abortions “fabrications.” …

Abortion foes quickly denounced Obama’s statement as untrue. The NRLC’s Johnson said “the bill backed by the White House (H.R. 3200) explicitly authorizes the government plan to cover all elective abortions.” And our analysis shows that Johnson’s statement is correct. Though we of course take no position on whether the legislation should allow or not allow coverage for abortions, the House bill does just that. …

As for the House bill as it stands now, it’s a matter of fact that it would allow both a “public plan” and newly subsidized private plans to cover all abortions.

Factcheck uses the same reference that Allahpundit did when responding to the President’s insistence that his opponents had fabricated the abortion coverage.  They also note that a campaign spokesperson confirmed at the time that “reproductive services” included abortion.  Of course, this was in 2007, when Obama was still running to the Left.  Later he would temper his language to make his position more ambiguous.

At any rate, Obama was right — someone’s lying about abortion and ObamaCare.  It turned out to be Obama, that’s all.

Update: Obama keeps insisting that this is a “myth,” even in today’s weekly address:

“I want to spend a few minutes debunking some of the more outrageous myths circulating on the internet, on cable TV, and repeated at some town halls across this country,” the president said.

He ticked through a series of issues, saying that the proposal will not call for health care for illegal immigrants, will not provide coverage for abortions, and does not include any provision for so-called “death panels.”

“These are phony claims meant to divide us,” the president said.

Well, someone’s making phony claims, and according to Annenberg and the facts, it’s the White House.


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